And The Winner Is… Woodlands High!

And The Winner Is… Woodlands High!

A Cardiff high school’s film-making credentials have been recognised with success in a national film festival prize awards project.

Woodlands High School in Caerau has scooped the inaugural Iris Education Award, as part of the annual Iris Prize Festival.

Iris Education is a project funded by Ffilm Cymru Wales which allows the Iris team to work with pupils from schools all around South Wales to tackle homophobic bullying.

The students take part in a film programming session, where they get to watch a carefully selected programme of short films, covering LGBT issues. Pupils are then able to begin the film development phase, where they work with the Iris team to create, develop and produce their own short film.

Their film is then acted and directed by the pupils and shot over a period of one day before being edited by the Iris team and exhibited at the pupils’ very own film festival in front of their peers.

Woodlands has been involved with the project for a number of years and has produced three short films, the latest of which – Stare, picked up the award.

Woodlands Deputy Headteacher, Lisa Purcell, said: We are delighted to have picked up this award and particularly pleased that we were the only special school on the shortlist.

“Our English department has been involved with the project for a while and it’s been great to see some of the students involved in the first film have become mentors to the younger year groups coming through.

“Stare shows our pupils talking about things that make them feel uncomfortable but also what makes them feel good. It’s about recognising and celebrating that we are all different.

“The film was screened at Chapter Arts Centre and the students involved spoke on stage during the festival. Everyone at the school is extremely proud of their efforts and we look forward to continued involvement in the project.”

Cabinet Member for Education, Cllr Sarah Merry, said: “Congratulations to Woodlands High on this success. The film is a really effective way of communicating the anti-bullying message. Well done to everyone involved.”

To view Woodlands High’s winning film, visit: